October 25, 2002 More than two years after the gruesome discovery of women's bodies stuffed into barrels on a rural Kansas property, the defense rested in the trial of John E. Robinson. Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty, alleging that Robinson killed at least six women -- three of them in Kansas -- in a scheme that included sadomasochistic sex with some of the victims and the adoption of the infant daughter of one. He also faces charges in Missouri in the deaths of three of the women. The Kansas trial involves the deaths of Suzette Trouten and Izabela Lewicka, 21, ; and the 1985 disappearance of Lisa Stasi. The bodies of Trouten and Lewicka were found in barrels on Robinson's rural property in Linn County, about 60 miles south of Kansas City. Stasi has never been found.
October 14, 2002 - Jurors in the trial of 58-year-old John E. Robinson watched a video of a sadomasochistic sex session between an alleged victim and the self-proclaimed Internet Slavemaster. The 40-minute video showed Robinson in a hotel room with Suzette Trouten, who performs sex acts and professes her allegiance to Robinson. Early in the video, Trouten sits on the edge of the bed, looks into the camera and says to Robinson: "This is what you wanted me to tell you: I'm your slave. ... Everything is yours." Several jurors covered their eyes at least briefly as the tape played. "The most important thing in life you are is my slave," Robinson later tells Trouten.
July 11, 2000 - An old letter, obtained by The Kansas City Star, was purportedly written by Paula Godfrey -- the first missing woman linked to Robinson -- about the time she vanished in September 1984. Her father, Bill Godfrey, is convinced it is a forgery designed to fool people into thinking that his 19-year-old daughter was alive and well at the time. The undated letter turned up years ago, neatly folded in the bottom of a briefcase belonging to a deceased business associate of Robinson. A relative of that associate, who died from cancer in the early 1990s, thinks the letter relates to the missing woman.
The one-page "Paula" note, a photocopy, was found with an original letter from Robinson addressed to the associate. That letter was in an "Equi-II" business envelope. Equi-II was an Overland Park corporation run by Robinson, who at the time described himself as a consultant in medical, agricultural and even charitable ventures. The second letter complained that the business associate had betrayed Robinson in a bad-check investigation. The business associate thought Robinson was dangerous, according to the relative, and told others to contact a federal agent if something happened to him. That might have been a reason for the associate to hold the old letters.
"(B)y the time you read this I'll be long gone..." the letter states. "I haven't decided on Cleveland, Chicago or Denver, oh well." With its careless typing and cursive signature, the letter bears an eerie resemblance to a similar note supposedly written a few months later by Lisa Stasi, Robinson's second alleged victim.
Two letters apparently signed by Stasi in January 1985 indicated that she had "decided to get away from this area and try to make a good life" for herself and her newborn daughter, Tiffany. Shortly after Stasi and Tiffany disappeared, one letter was addressed to a battered women's shelter, where they had recently stayed, and another was to her in-laws. Stasi's relatives, however, were immediately suspicious of the letters. They told investigators at the time that Robinson, who was purported to be trying to help Stasi find work and housing, had her sign four blank sheets of paper before she vanished.
July 7, 2000 - Cass County Prosecutor Chris Koster and Johnson County District Attorney Paul Morrison both want to try John E. Robinson Sr. for murder. Koster said that he wants to bring the alleged serial killer across the state line from Kansas as soon as possible to begin Missouri's case against him. When Morrison heard about the plan to arraign Robinson in Missouri and then return him to Kansas, he said it probably wouldn't work and might jeopardize the cases. "My understanding is there are serious legal problems with bringing a prisoner back and forth over state lines while there's a charge against him," Morrison said. "We're not going to inject any legal difficulties into this case."
July 6, 2000 - Authorities have now located Lisa Stasi's daughter, Tiffany, alive and living with Robinson's older brother in Hammond, Indiana. Robinson arranged the fake adoption of Tiffany soon after she and her mother dissappeared. Unaware that the adoption was not legal or that the girl's mother was presumably killed by Robinson, his brother raised the little girl in a seemingly normal fashion. According to authorities the brother never suspected any foulplay and had been given fake legal documents concerning the adoption. According to authorities Tiffany is now a teenager in her last year in high school. She has now been made aware of the true identity of her mother and is preparing to meet her biological father.
July 5, 2000 - Suspected S&M cyber-sex serial killer John Robinson allegedly agreed to pay an associate $50,000 to recruit women for an elite escort service. The man, who wants to remain anonymous, said he recruited women in topless clubs and gave them Robinson's phone number. One of the recruits was Paula Godfrey who dissappeared once she got in touch with Robinson. The associate said Godfrey was a good friend of his and he now blames himself for her disappearance. He also claimed that Robinson threatened to kill him when he tried to collect his referral money. Since then, 15 years ago, he severed all ties with the alleged Slavemaster.
June 26, 2000 - Authorities confirmed that Sheila Faith was one of the victims found in the Raymore storage locker. But they have yet to confirm if the remaining body is that of her daughter, Debbie.
June 21, 2000 - A former acquaintance said John Edward Robinson may have been member of a cult involving bondage, rape and torture. According to the informant Robinson's job in their cult was to recruit women. These women were then raped and tortured. The witness -- who remains unnamed -- saw Robinson partipate in three Kansas City area rituals where no one was killed. But the women were tortured extensively, sometimes even carving the face and abdomen of the victims and the cutting off body parts.
June 20, 2000 - Although investigators working on the John E. Robinson Sr. serial murder case thought they identified the last two women found in a Cass County storage locker as Sheila Dale Faith and her daughter, Debbie Lynn Faith, dental records and X-rays have not matched up. Police are now using the expertise of Michael Finnegan, a professor of anthropology at Kansas State University, to identify the victims. "We're just trying to get basic information, such as the age of women and the time period in which they have been dead," Cass County Prosecutor Chris Koster said. Using skeletal remains, Finnegan said, he can determine a person's age, sex, stature and race or ancestry which then police can compare to profiles of missing people.
June 18, 2000 - Investigators have linked John Edward Robinson Sr. to a missing mother and daughter from Fullerton, California who had moved to Colorado. The two Sheila Dale Faith, who would be 51 now, and her wheelchair-bound daughter, Debbie Lynn Faith, who would be 21, left California in 1994 to move to Colorado, just one year after John Faith, Sheila's husband and Debbie's father, died. According to family members, the two women then moved to the Kansas/Kansas area after living in Colorado for only a few months. Family members lost contact with them after they met a man called John. Police, tipped by the owner of a commercial mail center in Olathe, Kansas, discovered that Robinson had been picking up their monthly government checks until his arrest.
The owner of the mail center recognized Robinson -- whom he knew as Jim Turner -- from TV and told police about the mailbox where the June checks would be arriving. Besides the Faiths, police are looking for three other women and a 4-month-old baby who disappeared as early as 1984 and had connections with Robinson. One of the victims that has been identified, Beverly J. Bonner, also received mail in another box at the same mail center. According to her ex-husband he sent her monthly checks as part of a property settlement. Robinson started picking up her mail after she disappeared in 1996.
June 15, 2000 - Prosecutors in Kansas and Missouri filed separate murder charges against suspected serial killer and internet Slavemaster John E. Robinson. "John E. Robinson committed the offense of murder in the first degree in a manner outrageously or wantonly vile, horrible or inhuman in that it involved torture or depravity of mind," Cass County prosecutor Chris Koster said, reading from a letter notifying Robinson that if he is found guilty the state of Missouri will seek the death penalty. Koster filed three counts of first-degree murder and two counts of armed criminal action against Robinson, alleging Robinson used a hammer or similar instrument to beat the women to death.
In Kansas, Johnson County prosecutor Paul Morrison filed two counts of first-degree murder against Robinson as well as one count of kidnapping. The other of the Kansas bodies was identified as that of Izabela Lewicka, 22, a Kansas City-area woman who immigrated from Poland and had not been seen since last fall. Lewicka was believed to have been dating Robinson and possibly working for him as well. Like the other bodies found, Lewicka died from a blow to the head and her murder appeared to be part of a premeditated financial scam.
June 13, 2000 - Authorities have identified two of the five women whose bodies were found in barrels. The latest victim to be identified was identified was Beverly Bonner, 49, of Cameron, Missouri, who as a former librarian at the Missouri prison. She was one of three victims found last week in a Missouri storage locker. The other two have yet to be identified. Bonner allegedly met Robinson when she was working as a librarian in a Missouri prison where Robinson was serving a sentence for fraud. Bonner dropped out of sight six years ago after going into business with Robinson.
The first body to be identified was one of the two women found buried in the 16.5-acre plot in Linn County. The victim was 28-year-old Suzette Trouten who had moved to suburban Kansas City in February from Newport, Michigan. Her family said she was lured through an Internet chat room on the promise of $62,000 to care for "an elderly father." Records from the Missouri secretary of state show she was listed as the registered agent in the articles of incorporation for Hydro-Gro Incorporated. In the late 1970s and 1980s Robinson sold indoor gardening kits under the names Hydro-Gro Inc. and Hydro-Gro Commercial Hydroponic Management Inc. Several investors have since said they lost their money. The Missouri reincarnation of Hydro-Gro came in 1993, the year Robinson was released from prison. It faded out of existence in 1996, when it failed to file an annual report with the state. At the time Beverly Bonner was listed as the president of the company.
The incorporation papers for Hydro-Gro did not mention Robinson, but listed "James Turner" as company secretary. James Turner was an alias authorities say Robinson used in a sadomasochistic sex liaison with a woman he met through the Internet. Bonner's mother, who asked not to be identified, recalled a phone call in the mid-1990s in which her daughter enthusiastically spoke of future business ventures, including a hydroponics enterprise with Robinson. "She had mentioned at one time that that was one of the businesses they might go into. But the next time I talked to her, she said she was doing this thing overseas." That referred to a plan to work in the perfume industry.
June 9, 2000 - The lawyer for John E. Robinson, the man suspected in the deaths of five women whose bodies were found in barrels in Missouri and Kansas, said that his client is innocent and complained that the media have already convicted him. Robinson has been charged only in two sexual assault cases while investigators look into his connection with the five bodies which were found last week in barrels on his farm and in a storage locker he rented.
"I resent the fact that people are now claiming that Mr. Robinson, either directly or indirectly, is a serial killer," public defender Byron Cerrillo said. I guess the five bodies in the barrel would not indicate such thing. The lawyer, who seems to have watched too many "The Practice" episodes, complained that Robinson is being held on $5 million bond in maximum security. Robinson's family -- he has a wife and at least two grown children -- issued a statement saying they are horrified by last week's events. "As each day has passed, the surreal events have built into a narrative that is almost beyond comprehension," the statement said. "While we do not discount the information that has and continues to come to light, we do not know the person whom we have read and heard about on TV. The John Robinson we know has always been a loving and caring father."
June 8, 2000 - Suspected cyber sex serial killer John E. Robinson Sr. may have lured some of his female victims via the Internet with promises of work or offers of hardcore sexual escapades. Robinson is being held in Johnson County jail on two sexual assault charges filed by two different women he lured over the Internet to motels in Overland Park and Lenexa for sadomasochistic sex. He is also charged for stealing over $900 worth of sex toys from one of the women.
Authorities finished draining a pond on land owned by Robinson and are planning to start digging under a trailer on the property in the search for more evidence, possibly including more bodies. Robinson, investigators said, represented himself at various times as a businessman and philanthropist, and also as a purveyor of sadomasochistic sex. At the same time, he was living a quiet and modest existence in a mobile home park managed by his wife in Olathe, a southern suburb of the Kansas City metropolitan area. "There is the sadomasochistic sex world that is part of this investigation, but there is also an aspect of being a businessman and a philanthropist that he used to draw people in to financial scams," said Cass County, Missouri, prosecutor Chris Koster
June 7, 2000 - As the investigation of John "Slavemaster" Robinson widens, court documents revealed that the suspect was the last person seen with a 19-year-old woman and her infant daughter before they were reported missing 15 years ago. The disappearance of Lisa Stasi and her 5-month-old daughter, Tiffany, "has always been a part of this investigation," Johnson County District Attorney Paul Morrison said of the two-month probe into Robinson's life preceeding his arrest. Authorities revealed that their ongoing investigation of the suspect involved a "sadomasochistic group" in which Robinson and several others communicated through the Internet. "This case involves (Robinson) having numerous contact with others over the Internet, with a common thread being S&M," Morrison said.
According to published reports Robinson has an extensive criminal background dating back to 1969 with felony embezzlement charges. Between then and 1993, Robinson spent at least 15 years on probation and seven years in jail for an assortment of fraud and theft charges.
June 6, 2000 - In what is arguably the first cyber sex serial killer case in the Crime Archives, 56-year-old John Edward Robinson is believed to have killed at least five women he met in sadomasochistic chat rooms in the Internet. The case broke when authorities, who had been investigating Robinson for over three months, arrested him for sexually assaulting two women. Subsequently they unearthed two 55-gallon barrels with two corpses inside from a property he owned. Next police found three more drums with three dead women in a storage locker he rented 30 miles away in Raymore, Missouri.
"I can say one thing: The bodies (in the field) appear to have been in those barrels for some time," said Paul Morrison, the district attorney in Johnson County, Kansas. "The bodies in Raymore have probably been there longer." Allegedly Robinson had rented the locker for at least five years. In Kansas, about 20 investigators -- including some from the FBI -- continued to search Robinson's property. Crews planned to drain a pond on the land. "We may find more bodies, but we certainly hope not," Linn County Sheriff Marvin Stites said.
Most of the victims are believed related to Robinson's alleged Internet activities where he went by the screen moniker of "Slavemaster" trolling through different sadomasochistic chat rooms searching for victims. Robinson was arrested at mobile home park managed by his wife in Olathe, Kansas. One of the women he assaulted apparently travelled from Texas to have little S&M session with the suspect in a local hotel. Like the other surviving victim, things got rougher than intended and, unlike at least five others, she was able to escape alive. Presently he is being held on $5 million bond on charges of aggravated sexual battery and felony theft.
Beverly Bonner, 49, of Cameron, Missouri. Bonner allegedly met Robinson when as a librarian for the Missouri Department of Corrections at the department's Cameron facility where Robinson was serving a fraud conviction. Bonner dropped out of sight in 1996 after going into business with Robinson. At the time of her dissapearence she was listed as the president of Hydro-Gro Inc., a company operated in Kansas and Missouri by James Turner, an alias used by Robinson in Internet chat rooms. Bonner was identified through the use of dental records. Her body was found in a barrel in a Raymore, Missouri, storage facility rented by Robinson.
Izabela Lewicka, 21, a Polish immigrant who moved to the United States a few years ago. She graduated from high school in West Lafayette, Indiana in 1996. She then attended Purdue University for two semesters as a fine arts student. Lewicka then moved to Kansas City and went to Johnson County Community College in the fall of 1998 under the name Izabela Lewicka-Robinson. Police believe Lewicka was romantically linked with Robinson and, according to newspaper reports, was planning to marry him. She was not heard since the fall of 1999. Like the other bodies found, Lewicka died from a blow to the head. She was found buried in a barrel in a 16.5 acre La Cygne property owned by Robinson.
Suzette Trouten, 28, moved to suburban Kansas City in March 2000 from Monroe, Michigan. Her family said she was lured through an Internet chat room on the promise of $62,000 to care for "an elderly father." Records from the Missouri secretary of state show she was listed as the registered agent in the articles of incorporation for Hydro-Gro Inc. She was found in a barrel buried in the La Cygne property.
Sheila Dale Faith, who would be 51 now, left California in 1994 to move to Colorado, just one year after John Faith, Sheila's husband and Debbie's father, died. According to family members, the two women then moved to the Kansas City area after living in Colorado for only a few months. Family members lost contact with them after they met a man called John. Police, tipped by the owner of a commercial mail center in Olathe, Kansas, determined that Robinson had been picking up their monthly government checks until his arrest. On June 28 authorities confirmed that Sheila was one of the bodies found in the Raymore strorage facility. The third body at the site is believed to be Sheila's wheelchair-bound daughter, Debbie Lynn Faith, who would be 21, but authorites have yet been able to confirm it.
Catherine Clampitt, 27, missing since June of 1987. A one-time drug user seeking rehabilitation, Catherine moved from Wichita Falls, Texas, to Overland Park. She lost contact with her family once she found work at Equi-II, a management consulting firm created by Robinson.
Paula Godfrey, 19, missing since September of 1984. Paula disappearance and relationship to Robinson is least understood by investigators. Robinson's probation officer, Steve Haymes, who had become suspicious of his involvement with Godfrey, noted in a report: "Robinson had allegedly hired her to be a sales representative. Overland Park Police Department later received a letter from this girl stating that she was thankful for John Robinson's help and that she was o.k."
Lisa Stasi, 19, and her five-month-old daughter Tiffany, missing since 1985. Lisa was in a shelter for battered women when she met Robinson in 1985. Robinson allegedly recruited her for his fraudulent "Outreach" program for young single mothers, pledging to train her in Texas as a silkscreen printer, land her an $800-a-month stipend, set her up with baby-sitting and give her an apartment. On January 8, 1985, she and her baby were at an Overland Park Rodeway Inn, where a "John Osborne" had checked her in. Her room was paid for with a credit card issued to Equi-II, a consulting company set up by Robinson. She checked out two days later, and her family has not heard from her since.
Authorities have now located her daughter, Tiffany, alive and living with Robinson's older brother in Hammond, Indiana. Robinson arranged the fake adoption of Tiffany soon after she and her mother dissappeared. Unaware that the adoption was not legal or that the girl's mother was presumably killed by Robinson, his brother raised the little girl in a seemingly normal fashion. According to authorities the brother never suspected any foulplay and had been given fake legal documents concerning the adoption. According to authorities Tiffany is now a teenager in her last year in high school. She has now been made aware of the true identity of her mother and is preparing to meet her biological father.